Imagine a Home that Makes you Smile

Rebuilding Together Seattle Project

Yesterday the National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA) Puget Sound Chapter and Rebuilding Together Seattle gave an appreciative homeowner a much needed renovation.

Rebuilding Together Seattle RTS is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides free home repairs to low income homeowners (particularly those who are elderly, disabled, or families with children), so they can live in warmth, safety, and independence.

Yesterday with the coordination of many NKBA volunteers and donations we gave a home a new life. The entire kitchen was gutted and rebuilt with stock cabinetry and new appliances. The outside was painted and the yard was readied for new landscaping. All in a day!

Rebuilding Together Seattle Exterior Before Photo

Rebuilding Together Seattle Exterior Before Photo

From sourcing donated materials, equipment, labor and carpenters to organizing 80+ volunteers, it’s a huge job that commences in one beautiful day of organized chaos.

“Once plans are in place, it’s amazing what we can get done in one day, and the difference in someone’s life we can make,” explains Roshele Allison, CMKBD of NW Home Designers. Many thanks for chairing this massive effort!

Before the day started, plans were drawn in detail for a new kitchen layout using stock off the shelf cabinets.

Rebuilding Together Seattle Kitchen Elevation

Rebuilding Together Seattle Kitchen Elevation

Appliances were donated and delivered. A large refuse container and port-a-potties lined the curb. So many details were necessary to pull off this one day TV-like make over.

Rebuilding Together Seattle Rendering by NKBA Puget Sound

Kitchen Rendering by NKBA Puget Sound



Rebuilding Together Seattle Rendering by NKBA Puget Sound

Rendering by NKBA Puget Sound

Rebuilding Together Seattle Kitchen Before

Kitchen Before



Rebuilding Together Seattle Kitchen Before

Kitchen Before


Rebuilding Together Seattle Kitchen Almost Complete

Kitchen Almost Complete

Rebuilding Together Seattle in Progress

1PM Work in Progress

Rebuilding Together Seattle Putting on the Finishing Touches

A few more finishing touches

Rebuilding Together Seattle Back Yard

Backyard is ready for new plantings

Rebuilding Together Seattle Putting on the Finishing Touches

One last High! Window Frame

Thanks NKBA Puget Sound Chapter for the opportunity to participate in such a worthwhile endeavor. So proud to be a part of such a talented and energetic group of colleagues!






Maximizing a Tiny Bathroom Renovation

Does size matter? That depends, right? Want to see a tiny bathroom transformed into an efficient, luxurious huge-feeling experience with no change in the footprint? ….Well, if not huuuge then at least a lot bigger? Just this week, I was able to take pictures of a small bathroom renovation just completed. The before photos show just how much a renovation was needed. Knotty pine paneling and as older style tub enclosure dated the small bathroom. Not to mention the pretty pink fixtures. The homeowner presented me with a few of his ideas and his three objectives:

    1. Classy
    2. Uncluttered
    3. Make tiny look huge!

I’ll try to capture the essence of the renovation with Before Photos and After Photos:

Before Renovation

BEFORE Renovation


AFTER View with new tile, shower enclosure, sink, mirror and bidet


Unfortunately my photography skills are amateur at best. And bathrooms are so difficult to capture! But maximizing this tiny bathroom and making it more spacious is exactly what we achieved.


BEFORE Sink and Vanity


Electric Mirror and New Undermount Sink


BEFORE without Shelves


New custom shelving added


BEFORE “Niche”


Newly Designed Niches


Wall Mounted Space Saving Bidet


Another view of the shower, niches, new enclosure, floating seat, and vanity

We removed the rarely used (pink!) tub. Installing a wall mounted space-saving bidet is convenient to clean! And the vanity was wall mounted as well to maximize space. A floating seat in the shower provides convenience and comfort. The larger format tile is installed floor to ceiling which creates a visual feeling of a much larger room. All 3 objectives accomplished for a very happy homeowner who was very involved in all of the decisions! 1. Classy: Use of sophisticated timeless materials with clean lines. Monochromatic color scheme. 2. Uncluttered: We haven’t accessorized yet but with the new shelving, all of the grooming items have a place. Borrowing some space from an adjacent hallway closet allowed for roll out shelves which will store smaller items behind a mirrored bi-fold door. There are open slots for towels above. 3. Making bathrooms “bigger” is my business! I can help maximize your tiny bathroom… without moving a wall!

Designers’ Delight: December Shopping in the Crescent City

It was only two years ago that I wrote about my mission to find the perfect antique chandelier for a client in  New Orleans. And I was fortunate to be able to source a few unique items this year again. Reposting today as December Shopping in the French Quarter is just magical. It was a little cloudy, so these photos were as good as any taken this year. December is especially beautiful as the Crescent City is decorated in many unique and whimsical ways. I wanted to share some of my memorable impressions with you.

French Quarter

St. Louis Cathedral



Shopping in the French Quarter is an amazing experience. Beautiful antique shops are in abundance especially on Royal Street.

chandeliersantiques More »

Creative Built-In Sleeping Areas for Dogs

Built In Sleeping Area for Dogs

Photo by Matthew Millman Photography

As we are experiencing the Dog Days of Summer, I thought it appropriate to share ideas for planning stylish and creative built-in sleeping areas for dogs. Our pets are an important part of our household. Homeowners are finding that designing for their companion’s comfort, as well as their convenience, can be an exercise in delightful problem solving.

An imaginative solution I encountered at the San Francisco Decorator Show House is shown in the photo above. Carved out from under a stairway, a relaxing and stylish alcove is a perfect safe haven for your all important family member to keep you company in the kitchen. Doesn’t this beautiful dog look like she is part of the original painting on the walls that surround her?

With pet-friendly fabrics, such as Sunbrella, a custom designed cushion in just the right patterns and coordinated colors can be tailored to the space you dedicate to your dog.  And what do you think of that awesome bolster styled accent pillow? Removable slip covers will make washing a breeze. And speaking of cleaning, I especially like an area dedicated to grooming. If you have the space, consider incorporating a bathing area with a hand shower to make cleaning easier. If your laundry room is on the entry level this could be an ideal solution to keeping those muddy paws pristine.

I found a terrific article on Houzz that I am sharing with you below. You will see innovative solutions to keep your dog happy, cozy and your household fashionable! More »